Society + Space Review Forum: A House of Prayer for All People

This online forum includes an introduction by forum editor Lia Frederiksen; reviews by Natalie Oswin, Geraldine Pratt, and Farhang Rouhani; and a response from author David K. Seitz.

Read the full forum at Society + Space.

A House of Prayer for All People (David Seitz)Contents:

Locating A House of Prayer for All People: An Introduction by Lia Frederiksen 

Seitz’s book is about the politics of belonging and affective dimensions of citizenship in one Queer Protestant church in Toronto, Canada, but New Orleans was a fitting location for the conference session that this review forum originates from.

Grounding Subjectless Queer Critique by Natalie Oswin

In this book, Seitz beautifully gets at the diffuse nature of power and the need for constant vigilance and rethinking within queer politics and scholarship. He challenges the notion that there are “good” or “bad” queer objects and easily identifiable queer heroes and victims.

Messy Politics: Good Book for Bad Times by Geraldine Pratt

This is a good book for bad times. It models a generous and nuanced mode of critique and thus will be excellent for teaching undergraduate and graduate students. It is critical without being debilitating, putting queer, psychoanalytic, antiracist, and postcolonial theory in service of practical politics and emancipatory aspirations. That these politics are messy is precisely Seitz’s point.

Queertopia and a House of Prayer for All by Farhang Rouhani

The possibility of “a house of prayer for all people”, as a space of spiritualism and political action, points to the simultaneous importance of having a utopic vision and the fact that such a vision lies in possibility, an incomplete process that is continually challenging and needing our attention. This is analogous to what queer anarchists discuss by way to the notion of “queertopia”…

Improper Queer Citizenship Between Particularity and Abstraction by David K. Seitz 

I didn’t feel that my archive required a “new” neologism, like “proper” queer citizenship, to describe an obviously similar and related form of complicity. It’s not that these extant critiques were not salient, as the book makes all too clear. Nor am I saying, to riff off of Tina Turner, “We Don’t Need Another Neologism”, as it were.

Published in: Society + Space
By: Lia Frederiksen, editor